Help requested in how to go about selecting subwoofer etc - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 26 Old 09-09-2013, 11:00 AM - Thread Starter
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Im in the processes of final touches of Home Entertainment Center setup in my living room and asking for advice from the AVS experts for a subwoofer that would complement the equipment I have already purchased. I was originally going to mount the 65" TV on a 15' 4" wall but fell in love with a beautiful yet massive 10' Fairmont Empire burled wood cabinet with piers, lights and an overhead bridge with lots of storage for DVDs etc. The console has a drawer rather than a separate hidden shelf for the center channel so the center channel will be set just above the TV on a shelf directly under the bridge connecting the tiers and tilted down toward the main viewing area (a couch).

The equipment I have is this so far and I am looking for a recommendation for a wireless subwoofer that complements what I have as well as the room size (15' wide and 18' long), with 9' ceilings, wood laminate floors and (facing the TV) on the right hand wall are two 48"w x70"h windows with wood blinds separated by a, 7' wide fireplace. Behind the couch in the 15 x18 TV room the room adjoins another open small dining room area that is 12 x 12 essentially making the entire are 15 x 30. The couch is parallel to the TV wall and is approximately 14 feet from the TV.

Panasonic 65" TC-PC65ZT60 Plasma TV
Martin Logan Motion 40 floor speakers (2) with Audioquest Type 4 speaker wires
Martin Logan Motion 30 Center Channel with Audioquest Type 4 speaker wires
Pioneer Elite VSX-70 7.2 630 watts) A/V home theater receiver
Audioquest Cinnamon HDMI cables
Panafax M4300-PM with 9 outlets and 2 coaxial RF connections

The TV room is downstairs below an upstairs master bedroom and because the joists in the ceiling run parallel to the TV wall it would make mounting side speakers in the walls to the right and left of the couch and rear speakers behind the couch in a portion of the ceiling 5' directly behind the couch that drops down a foot that conceals ductwork that surrounds the adjoin dining room a sheetrock ripping-up mess. Had the joists been perpendicular to the TV wall the speaker wires cables could have been more easily run through the ceiling without having to drill a hole in each joists to run the wires through.

So for now I will just go with two floor speakers, a center channel and add a subwoofer. At some point within the next six months I may decide to try to add at least the 2 side speakers (maybe pull the crown molding along the ceiling/side walls off and run wires behind that instead) and maybe even add rear speakers. Hence, the reason for buying a 7.2 rather than a 3.1 or 5.1 Pioneer Elite A/V. Because the couch facing the TV wraps around to the left and also runs along most of the left wall there is not enough room on the left side of the 10' TV credenza to place a second subwoofer so I will place the two Martin Logan Motion 40s floor speakers about 6"- 1 foot from each side of the piers of TV Entertainment Center.

So I would place whatever subwoofer I go with on the floor to the right of the TV cabinet near the edge of the fireplace (rarely used) about 4" right of one of the windows (bottom of window ledge is 12" off wood laminate floor) perhaps on an Auralex SubDude 15" x 15" x 3" Isolation Riser I read about since there is a separate wall power outlet right below the window.

The cabinet in picture below is currently about 18"-20" off wall awaiting delivery of Panafax Power Condition/Surge protector as well as a Panasonic rep who is coming out in 3 days to fix the fan noise from Panasonic Plasma TV. The red chest on the floor is where I am thinking of setting the sub. Its about 40" from the right Martin Logan speaker which I am directing at an angle back toward the center of the couch.. Is that too close? When in Best Buy I notice that whenever testing speaker when he turned the sub on for movie viewing I would turn my head to the right looking to see where the rumbling noise was originating from. I realize that two subs out in front of the console would be ideals but the room is already crowded and I would prefer not to do that.

So yes this is long winded but I would greatly appreciate advice regarding SUB as well as any future side or rear speaker in terms of choice and appropriate woofer diameter and wattage complementary with exiting MartinLogans if that is important. Thanks for the read and any advice greatly appreciated including placement of speakers and subwoofer(s) relative to each other.

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post #2 of 26 Old 09-09-2013, 11:06 AM
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You will want something nice looking to fit in with that gorgeous entertainment center cabinet, no doubt. What is your budget? Size restrictions? Aesthetic restrictions?
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post #3 of 26 Old 09-09-2013, 11:59 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

You will want something nice looking to fit in with that gorgeous entertainment center cabinet, no doubt. What is your budget? Size restrictions? Aesthetic restrictions?

The sub would go on the floor right where the red chest is temporarily set in the second picture. Click on picture for blowup. I was told you should match your floor and center channel speakers to be of the same line but the sub did not have to be the same manufacturer. I hear the wireless Martin Logans 700s were good, but as is to be expected, there is a wide variety of opinions on any speakers whether it be for subs, floors, center, sides or rear speakers. Im open to any suggestions just looking for suggestions for ONE sub that would be compatitible with my Martin Logan , Pioneer A/V receiver, and the Panasonic ZT TV

Any other advice regarding other questions about side and rear speaker and placement of sub appreciated as well although I am limited somewhere on the sub by the room size and TV Console center

Since I am going to exchange longer HDMI cables (10 to 6 between Receiver and TV) ) and 6' to 3'4" for BlueRay to receiver within enclosed cabinet ...too much extra cords length not needed being crammed behind electronic units within cabinet) although also thinking about returning Audioquest Carbon cables... Im currently using Audioquest Carbon 10" HDMI between the Receiver and TV and a 6" Audioquest carbon HDMI between the Blue Ray Player player and Receiver and exchange them for lower priced and shorter Cinnamon HDMIs. I have a 3' cinnamon HDMI between Receiver and cable box.

In all fairness I tested the difference between the carbon and cinnamon HDMI and despite many in this forum who said there is no difference both my wife and daughter could see the difference in picture quantity. I ran a series of comparison switching cable back and forth from Blue Ray directly to TV (bypassing receiver) with them leaving the room and every single time (7 or 8 tests over a 2 hour period) they picked the picture with the carbon HDMI. I did vary the order I showed and they wrote 1 or 2 on a piece paper so as not to be biased by either others verbal preference.
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post #4 of 26 Old 09-09-2013, 03:41 PM
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But you didn't answer the budget question? And that location you have chosen for the sub might not be the best location. Any flexibility in sub location? When all else fails a front corner usually works well. Maybe not the best location but it generally works for most rooms.

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post #5 of 26 Old 09-09-2013, 11:40 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Kini62 View Post

But you didn't answer the budget question? And that location you have chosen for the sub might not be the best location. Any flexibility in sub location? When all else fails a front corner usually works well. Maybe not the best location but it generally works for most rooms.

As you can see from the picture not much flexibility as to where the sub can go. Budget? Something compatible with the MartinLogan 40s and 30 center. Under $1000 for sure but will test some out at places who are selling the Martin Logan. If it is placed in corner can wire it to receiver with speaker cable. If out in font will look to get a wireless sub maybe something Martin Logan 700 although Im open to any other subs.
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post #6 of 26 Old 09-10-2013, 02:53 AM
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If you can handle something big, check out the Hsu VTF3, that sub has terrific performance, lots of very high quality output and very deep bass. It comes in a Rosewood finish that might be a better match for your entertainment center.
If you need something smaller, check out the Dayton Audio Titanic 15" and 12". They don't have as nice of a finish but they are smaller and will pack a real big punch for the dollar and size. There is also kit versions of those subs which are easy to assemble and saves you $150, they are here and here. It will only take maybe an hour to assemble, that is well worth the extra $150 in my opinion, that is maximum bang for the buck. Also, if you have the room for something big and sound quality is your top priority, check this kit out. There is also the assembled version of that sub, but it will come in over $1k when you add shipping.
If you need something that is both smaller and has a nice finish, check out the Aperion Bravus 12d. It doesn't quite have the performance of the Hsu, but it does pretty good, and comes in a gloss black and also gloss cherry. All those are under $1k shipped.
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post #7 of 26 Old 09-10-2013, 05:34 AM
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+1,000 on shadyJ's recommendation for the VTF3 MK4. It will run you about $799 in the rosenut finish, and will FAR outperform any of the subs available at Best Buy. Hsu is an internet-direct company, but you'll find they've got a well-earned reputation for sound quality, bang-for-the-buck pricing, and customer service.

To give you a quick side-by-side spec comparison between it and the MartinLogan Dynamo 700, here are the main points:


Dynamo 700
300w RMS output
24-200Hz frequency response
10" driver

Hsu VTF3- MK4

350w RMS
16-200Hz frequency response (it's a tunable sub, meaning you can position a couple different port plugs to tune the sound the way you like it better for your room and listening habits)
108db
12" driver

If you like to geek out over frequency response curves like I do, here's a link:

http://www.hsuresearch.com/products/vtf-3mk4.html

Hope that helps!

p.s. Why wireless? When I look at your room photos, it seems like your sub will be close enough that a 12-15' foot sub cable will be a good investment. Wireless can introduce problems, and is less than ideal sonically.

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post #8 of 26 Old 09-10-2013, 06:30 AM
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Wireless will be fine. Here's one that I ordered that should work great. SVS even offers it.

http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?partnumber=300-580

It will be tough positioning a sub in there. I would recommend checking out an svs cylinder that you could put in one of the corners behind one of the main speakers.

http://www.svsound.com/subwoofers/cylinder
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post #9 of 26 Old 09-10-2013, 08:46 AM
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Originally Posted by brian6751 View Post

Wireless will be fine. Here's one that I ordered that should work great. SVS even offers it.

http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?partnumber=300-580

It will be tough positioning a sub in there. I would recommend checking out an svs cylinder that you could put in one of the corners behind one of the main speakers.

http://www.svsound.com/subwoofers/cylinder

+1 on the Sub-Link. I've got one of these connecting two subs wirelessly and it works just fine.
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post #10 of 26 Old 09-10-2013, 01:35 PM
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Wireless will be fine. Here's one that I ordered that should work great. SVS even offers it.

http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?partnumber=300-580

It will be tough positioning a sub in there. I would recommend checking out an svs cylinder that you could put in one of the corners behind one of the main speakers.

http://www.svsound.com/subwoofers/cylinder

Plus 2 on the SVS cylinder sub. You only need 17^2 inches in which to place one. The PC12 at $699 will outperform any ML Dynamo sub including the $1500 the new 15" version.

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post #11 of 26 Old 09-10-2013, 01:40 PM
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The PC12 at $699 will outperform any ML Dynamo sub including the $1500 the new 15" version.

Yeah, I doubt that. The PC12 is a good sub, no doubt, but I would go for that Dynamo 1500x over the PC12 in a heartbeat.
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post #12 of 26 Old 09-10-2013, 03:30 PM
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Check out the PSA XV15 in Cordovan Cherry for 949.00 shipped with a 5yr bumper to bumper warranty...or there is 5 other finish options to choose from. Standard black sand texture is 799.00 shipped

http://www.powersoundaudio.com/products/xv15

SVS also has some great subs with a solid 5yr warranty, but they do not offer any finish options other then black oak, matte, or gloss. The PC12NSD for 699.00 is worth a look if you dont mind a black fabric cylinder.

Another great option is the HSU VTF3 MK4 in Rose Nut for 898.00 shipped. Slightly bigger then the XV15 but its a solid sub that is almost as powerful as the VTF15. Actually its only down 1db @ 16hz compared to the VTF15, but the 15 has 3db more from 20hz on up.
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post #13 of 26 Old 09-10-2013, 04:19 PM
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Yeah, I doubt that. The PC12 is a good sub, no doubt, but I would go for that Dynamo 1500x over the PC12 in a heartbeat.

Well I'm guessing the Dynamo 1500 is in the same league at the Def Tech SC 8000, which I own and would not outperform a PC12. The ML won't dig as deep, probably boomy like most store brand subs, lack definition etc...

Maybe if it were the same price as a PC12 it would be worth looking at if you wanted the built in wireless and shiny surface or didn't like the cylinder form and were still space limited, but at $1500 it's just as much of a joke as the Def Tech subs.

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post #14 of 26 Old 09-10-2013, 04:55 PM
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Well I'm guessing the Dynamo 1500 is in the same league at the Def Tech SC 8000, which I own and would not outperform a PC12. The ML won't dig as deep, probably boomy like most store brand subs, lack definition etc...

Maybe if it were the same price as a PC12 it would be worth looking at if you wanted the built in wireless and shiny surface or didn't like the cylinder form and were still space limited, but at $1500 it's just as much of a joke as the Def Tech subs.

The Deftech sub is a 11" driver with two passive 12"s. The ML is just a sealed 15". Until more is known about the ML driver, its impossible to say, but a decent sealed 15" could outperform the PC12 and Deftech subs pretty easily, although maybe not at their tuning points. Unlike many other speaker manufacturers, ML does have some good subs, although relatively expensive. I think they would use a good driver which could beat the SVS and Deftech subs handily. A lot of subs get dismissed around here simply for being a store purchased brand, but I am willing to bet that ML would be a killer sub with very good sound quality and lots of output.
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post #15 of 26 Old 09-10-2013, 06:55 PM
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The Deftech sub is a 11" driver with two passive 12"s. The ML is just a sealed 15". Until more is known about the ML driver, its impossible to say, but a decent sealed 15" could outperform the PC12 and Deftech subs pretty easily, although maybe not at their tuning points. Unlike many other speaker manufacturers, ML does have some good subs, although relatively expensive. I think they would use a good driver which could beat the SVS and Deftech subs handily. A lot of subs get dismissed around here simply for being a store purchased brand, but I am willing to bet that ML would be a killer sub with very good sound quality and lots of output.

Jman did a review at hometheatershack, and was impressed with it (for what it is). The driver looked OK, maybe in the same class as the PC/PB driver, not close to the plus or Ultra drivers and not as robust as the Def tech driver either.

The box itself was thin and kind of flimsy looking. Total weight was 51 pounds which is not bad, but the Def Tech SC8000 weighs over 70lbs and is smaller. I guess for its size the SC was OK, but since moving to a PC12+ I now know what a real sub is supposed to do and sound like, all for less money than either the ML or Def Tech.

If the ML were $699 or so it would be a pretty good deal based on that one review, but for a little more you can get and XS 15 or Rythmik F12 and for a little more the F15. Even the SVS SB12 has similar performance and you can almost buy 3 for the price of the ML.

Yep, I was one of the many foolish ones that bought a major B&M brand sub only to find I got a LOT less than I paid for.

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post #16 of 26 Old 09-10-2013, 07:08 PM
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Yeah, I didn't see that. I would expect a more substantial driver in a $1500 15". It does look like they cheaped out on the driver.
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post #17 of 26 Old 09-11-2013, 12:53 PM - Thread Starter
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Yeah, I didn't see that. I would expect a more substantial driver in a $1500 15". It does look like they cheaped out on the driver.

I really appreciate all your comments. and advice on subs with the various links. l

Im using Audioquest Type 4 speaker cables for Martin Logans 40s Floors and 30 center Channel. If I choose to buy a 10'-12 foot cable rather than go wireless with subwoofer would Audioquest Type 4 be good to use?
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post #18 of 26 Old 09-11-2013, 01:16 PM
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Im using Audioquest Type 4 speaker cables for Martin Logans 40s Floors and 30 center Channel. If I choose to buy a 10'-12 foot cable rather than go wireless with subwoofer would Audioquest Type 4 be good to use?
I'm sure it will work fine, but it's priced some twenty times what you actually need to spend for other cables that work just as well.
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post #19 of 26 Old 09-11-2013, 02:03 PM
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I'm sure it will work fine, but it's priced some twenty times what you actually need to spend for other cables that work just as well.

+1
Just go to monoprice or amazon and get whatever cable costs the least.

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post #20 of 26 Old 10-31-2013, 12:04 AM - Thread Starter
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Did someone say from this picture I could place a sub in the right corner of the room BEHIND the right ML 40 floor speaker? Ive never owned an individual sub before.
Wouldnt a sub about 2-3 feet behind a floor speaker adversely effect the sound of the Floor or vice versa?
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post #21 of 26 Old 10-31-2013, 12:48 AM
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You should place the sub where ever it sounds best. Sometimes there is no telling where that is. I would try that position and see how that sounds. Try as many different placements as you can, and keep the sound where it sounds the best.
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post #22 of 26 Old 10-31-2013, 08:31 AM
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Wouldnt a sub about 2-3 feet behind a floor speaker adversely effect the sound of the Floor or vice versa?
Not at all. It's often the best way to place speakers, with the subs close to the wall and the mains at least three feet out, as that puts the response null caused by the reflection off the wall behind them outside of both their pass bands. But having the mains that far out from the wall isn't always an option for other than dedicated HT rooms.

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post #23 of 26 Old 12-16-2013, 08:18 PM
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If the ML were $699 or so it would be a pretty good deal based on that one review, but for a little more you can get and XS 15 or Rythmik F12 and for a little more the F15. Even the SVS SB12 has similar performance and you can almost buy 3 for the price of the ML.

Just updating for people who do google searches and try to compare to subs, dont want people reading false information. A SVS SB12 NSD does not have similar performance to a Dynamo 1500X.






The Dynamo 1500X can hang with a PB13Ultra in sealed mode pretty well too


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post #24 of 26 Old 12-16-2013, 08:20 PM
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Room Gain is pretty nice with the Dynamo 1500 too.

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post #25 of 26 Old 12-17-2013, 07:27 AM
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Just updating for people who do google searches and try to compare to subs, dont want people reading false information. A SVS SB12 NSD does not have similar performance to a Dynamo 1500X.






The Dynamo 1500X can hang with a PB13Ultra in sealed mode pretty well too



Sure, except that it's over $1500 and has a horrible build. It weighs less than my Def Tech super cube 8000. It has a cheap, lightweight driver, a cheap lightweight cabinet and a cheap amp. But if you want to keep comparing it to a PB13 Utlra or F15HP or SB13 Ultra keep on keeping on.

They're not even on the same planet let alone the same playing field. Again if it were about $700 it would be a decent buy. But I'd take a pair of SB12s or XS15s and still be several hundred dollars ahead.

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post #26 of 26 Old 12-17-2013, 09:59 AM
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Again so u want it to cost $100 more than a SB12NSD when the 1500 plays much louder down low?

And since u like to mention weight the 1500 weighs 50% more than the SB12.

U bring up the Supercube 8000 but that thing is irrelevant to me, I'd never buy a subwoofer which I can't find measured data charts of.



The numbers are what they say they are, and the 1500x has data charts say it's more comparable to a SB13Ultra down low than a SB12NSD.

U say you'd rather take two SB12's, but two 1500's would likely play twice as loud as two SB12's in a room.


And the icing on the cake is the 1500's available Perfect Bass Kit
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